We had the good fortune of connecting with Hillary Lewis and Yaya Margarita and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Hillary and Yaya, maybe we can start at the very start – the idea – how did you come up with the idea for your business?
We came up with the idea for our business because we saw a need in our local community. A need for a workout that empowers and excites you. A space where everyone could be themselves, and become an even better version of themselves! Shine Studio is a fitness studio, but it’s also a place where you want to be, rather than somewhere you HAVE to go to workout. It’s a safe space to sweat and shine and laugh and and leave it all on the floor. Whether you’re just beginning your fitness journey or want to try something new and exciting, our Shine Society will welcome you with open arms.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
We both grew up as dancers and as we grew older and moved on to other careers, we didn’t get to have dance in our lives anymore. We both turned to fitness as a way to keep moving our bodies and stay strong, but we also struggled with workouts feeling like a chore. We created Shine Studio to bring dance fitness to our community, and it has become so much more. We now have several formats like PilatesRemix, BarreBabe, YogaJam, sculpt classes like BootyBurn and more that are all in our signature “to-the-beat” style. Music and movement are medicine, and we meld them together in a way that you almost forget you’re working out!
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
The South Bay or the Beach Cities of LA is one of the most special places in the whole city. When we have friends visit, we’ll hit all the beach towns! Grab a Paradise Bowl in Manhattan Beach and walk the pier. Head to lunch at The Source in Hermosa Beach and maybe grab some Lucky 7 coffee before laying on the sand. Then we’d take a hike in Palos Verdes and have an early dinner at Nelson’s at Terranea. To close out the night, we might head to Riviera Mexican in Redondo Beach for a marg! And of course, catch the sunset on the Esplanade.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
We want to give a little Shoutout to our friend Megan Lebre, who started the movement @SmallBizCheerleader on Instagram. What started out as a call to support local business during the pandemic, turned into this idea to lift up the #supportlocal movement and her drive to help small businesses succeed is so inspiring! She’s been our biggest supporter since day 1 and we are happy to call her a member and friend after 4 years of knowing her.
Select photos by Ute Reckhorn